Wednesday's New Things: Oddities and Endities

Red Moon, writing by Carlos Trillo, art by Eduardo Risso

A couple of years ago, as 100 Bullets ended, I had the bright idea to do a bunch of stories focusing on the work of that book's artist, the Argentinian Eduardo Risso. As I gathered material for the retrospective, which I never actually completed, I realized that most of Risso's work was originally from outside of the US. Reading through that stuff was one of the first experiences I had with Latin American comics, which was an important moment for me in terms of expanding my comics consciousness outside of what's produced in the US. Red Moon is one of Risso's collaborations with another Argentine, Carlos Trillo, especially intriguing to me because it reaches for a much different register than much of the other work I've seen from them; it reads, or at least the preview does, like a kids' adventure comic if it had been written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. The angst of children is a topic that seems both well trod (think Peanuts, Calvin and Hobbes, and, in not-comics form, Where The Wild Things Are) and under explored; where Risso's thin, anxious line in 100 Bullets underscored a struggle for power on the one hand and mere survival on the other (dramatized by the hypothetical that gave the series both its name and its early hook), here it contrasts the latter with the creative hunger of childhood. As is usually true, the difference between color palates is mostly responsible for the difference in tone, but it's a mark of the artist's talent that he maintains his recognizable style, one that I associate with a crime comics grit and grime, in panels like the one below: 

Where I usually think of Risso's panels as dramatic and dense, this one is elegant, ever so slightly obscuring what's really at stake, suggesting the way that adults often misunderstand children's play. 

I often say that I'm looking forward to something, or that something looks like a treat; from the preview, I'm betting on Red Moon being a masterpiece. 

The Authentic Accounts of Billy The Kid's Old Timey Oddities, written by Eric Powell, drawn by Kyle Hotz, colored by Dan Brown

This is a book about a rumors-of-his-death-have-been-greatly-exaggerated Billy the Kid working as hired muscle for a traveling a traveling sideshow in the Wild West. It was written by Eric Powell, who writes and draws The Goon (I love The Goon). It's a shame that he didn't also do that art here, since his feel for a sort of familiar grotesque seems perfect for stories like these. Kyle Hotz's work is a little more straight up than Powell's, reaching as it does towards the dramatic. I won't know if that move is a good one in terms of tone until I dig into the book a little, but it certainly seems like it works in the preview.

The Wicked and the Divine, written by Kieron Gillen, drawn by Jamie McKelvie, colors by Matt Wilson

Whole Comics: Jillian Fleck

Something tasty from Jillian Fleck. Read here. Buy here